Eugene Weekly : Movies : 9.13.07



Films open the Friday following date of EW publication unless otherwise noted. See archived movie reviews.

Brave One, The: Jodie Foster returns to ferocious form as a New York radio host who is attacked and nearly killed by a group of men who kill her fiancé (Naveen Andrews, from Lost). The experience leaves her shaken and transforms her into a vigilante, but at what personal cost? R. 122 min. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.

Daddy Day Camp: C’mon, Cuba Gooding Jr., don’t you have an Oscar to live up to? Oh, never mind; just keep turning out claptrap like this sequel to Daddy Day Care. Now the daddies take the kids to camp! And things get out of control! No way! PG. 93 min. Movies 12.

Dragon Wars: The good: Dragons! In L.A.! The bad: The plot is a convoluted thing about magical powers, resurrected lovers and a dragon that will be able to ascend into heaven. But still … dragons! In L.A.! Can it be better than Reign of Fire? PG13. 90 min. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.

Eleventh Hour, The: Leonardo DiCaprio narrates this well-intentioned but somewhat overly familiar film about the state of the earth’s environment. It’s tough to be too hard on such a vital topic, but the film tries to pack too much in and leaves audiences without much that’s new and concrete. PG. 91 min. Bijou. See review this issue.

Jesus Camp: Heidi Ewing and Rachel Grady’s Oscar-nominated documentary follows children at Kids on Fire summer camp, where they are taught to become part of the evangelical army of tomorrow. “A scary, sobering inside look at the attempts of an increasingly powerful group to erode the separation of church and state,” said The Washington Post. PG13. 85 min. 7 pm Sept. 16, DIVA. Free.

Joni Mitchell: A rare solo TV appearance on piano, guitar and dulcimer from the BBC that’s the only known video from Mitchell’s Blue era. Not rated. Bijou LateNite.

Looking Into the Eye of Extinction: Wildlife conservation film explores the threat of extinction and the conservation efforts surrounding the wildlife of the Amazon river basin, the Galapagos Islands and the Andes. Filmmaker Ryan Killackey will introduce the film and give a brief Q&A before the screening. 7 pm and 9 pm Sept. 15, Wildish Theater, Springfield. $7, $5 stu., sr., $3 under 12, under 3 free.

Mr. Sean’s Cartoon Club: Crazy, weird and old cartoons featuring Betty Boop, Felix, Superman and more. Noon-1:30 pm Sept. 16. Bijou. $4.

Mr. Woodcock: This oft-delayed film involves a fellow (Seann William Scott) heading home to stop his mother (Susan Sarandon) from marrying his high school gym teacher (Billy Bob Thorton), who was, shall we say, no saint. PG13. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.

No End in Sight: Charles Ferguson’s searing, elegant documentary chronicles a timeline of failures surrounding the planning and management of the war in Iraq. Ferguson has placed news we’ve seen before into a precise timeline, filled in with fascinating interviews, that paints a damning portrait of ignorance and incompetence on the part of the Bush administration. Not rated. 102 min. Bijou. See review this issue.

Wet Hot American Summer: Entertainment Weekly called comedian David Wain’s goofball take on the lives of summer camp counselors circa 1981 “A loving and meticulous re-creation of the last moment before American youth culture went permanently ironic.” With Janeane Garofalo, Michael Showalter, Paul Rudd, Molly Shannon, David Hyde Pierece and Amy Poehler. R. 97 min. Bijou LateNite.

Films open the Friday following EW publication date unless otherwise noted. See archived reviews at



Balls of Fury: Y’know, there are a couple of scenes in this movie’s trailer that involve Christopher Walken and are actually kind of funny. The rest of it is a bunch of ball jokes. Plot? Super secret underground … ping pong tournament! PG13. 90 min. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.

Becoming Jane: Anne Hathaway (The Devil Wears Prada) stars in this heavily imagined look at Jane Austen’s early years — a love affair, an inspiration. It’s sweet and the cast is a delight, but the movie can’t quite connect Jane’s two passions: her writing and her interest in dashing Tom Lefroy (a wonderful Jame McAvoy). PG13. 120 min. VRC Stadium 15. (8/16)

Bourne Ultimatum, The: “I remember everything,” says Matt Damon’s Jason Bourne in this film’s action-packed trailer. Director Paul Greengrass and the major players (Joan Allen, Julia Stiles) return to the series’ satisfying third installment, which finds Bourne hunting down his past. PG13. 111 min. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15. (8/9)

Brothers Solomon, The: Will Arnett (Arrested Development) and Will Forte are two romantically and socially challenged brothers trying to fulfill their dying father’s wish that one of them have a child. Directed by Mr. Show‘s Bob Odenkirk. R. VRC Stadium 15.

Death Sentence: Kevin Bacon stars as a man whose life is changed when he witnesses something horrible and then decides he’ll go to any length to protect his family. Directed by James Wan, the creator of Saw. R. 110 min. Movies 12.

Evan Almighty: Steve Carrell takes the starring role in this sequel to Bruce Almighty. Now, God (Morgan Freeman) wants Evan (Carrell), a former newscaster turned Congressman, to build an ark. Boy, that’s gonna involve a lot of critters. PG. 90 min. Movies 12.

1408: This adaptation of a Steven King short story, which stars John Cusack as a man alone in a horribly haunted hotel room, is getting surprisingly good reviews; Entertainment Weekly said it’s “reassuringly old-school gothic.” With Samuel L. Jackson, directed by Mikael Hâfström. PG13. 94 min. Movies 12.

Hairspray: Based on John Waters’ 1988 cult classic, Hairspray is about teenagers on a local Baltimore dance show — especially one short, plump, cheery girl who loves to dance. With John Travolta in drag. PG. 117 min. Cinemark. (7/26)

Halloween: Rob Zombie directs this remake of John Carpenter’s 1978 film, but opts to take a peek into the past that created Michael Myers. R. 109 min. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix: The Ministry of Magic is in denial about the return of Lord Voldemort, Hogwarts get a nasty new teacher and Harry … Harry’s in one kind of trouble or another throughout the mostly successful and only slightly disappointing fifth HP film. It’s not quite Prisoner of Azkaban, but it’s getting there. PG13. 138 min. Cinemark. (7/19)

I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry: Adam Sandler and Kevin James star as a couple of firefighters who, for various bureaucratic insurance reasons, claim to be domestic parners — all fun and games until the news gets ahold of the story. I’m sure all related issues are dealt with thoughtfully. Um, right. PG13. 110 min. Movies 12.

Knocked Up: Judd Apatow follows The 40-Year-Old Virgin with a sweet yet still raunchy comedy about the unwanted pregnancy that occurs when up-and-coming journalist Alison (Katherine Heigl of Grey’s Anatomy) has a one-night stand with slacker Ben (Seth Rogen). R. 129 min. Movies 12. (6/7)

License to Wed: Robin Williams stars in this silly little summer fluff of a romantic comedy about love and marriage. With Mandy Moore and John Krasinski. PG13. 90 min. Movies 12.

Live Free or Die Hard: Justin Long — yes, he of the Mac ads — joins Bruce Willis for this fourth chapter in the Die Hard franchise, in which a baddie attacks the U.S.’s infrastructure over the 4th of July weekend. PG13. 130 min. Movies 12.

Mr. Bean’s Holiday: Good old Mr. Bean (Rowan Atkinson)! You either adore him, or you find him not at all funny. Here, a French vacation turns out to be full of mishaps and mistaken identity. Is Mr. Bean a kidnapper, a filmmaker or neither? G. 87 minutes. Cinemark.

My Best Friend: Director Patrice Leconte leads Daniel Auteuil (Caché) and Dany Boon (The Valet) through a sometimes-slapsticky, sometimes-sweet story of grown men — one a friendless gallery owner, one a friendly taxi driver — making friends. What sounds simple is mildly complicated and unexpectedly charming. In French with English subtitles. PG13. 94 min. Bijou. (9/6)

Nanny Diaries, The: Jersey girl Annie (Scarlett Johansson) is at odds with her mother as to what she should do with her life when an opportunity arises to become a nanny for a wealthy family on NYC’s Upper East Side. Working for the very rich turns out not to be quite the escape from real life that she expected. With Laura Linney and Paul Giamatti. PG13. 106 min. VRC Stadium 15. (8/30)

Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End: Captain Jack and crew are back for the third – and what one might hope is the final — Pirates movie (which has something to do with saving Jack from the Land of the Dead and facing off with the Dutch East India Company). A warning to soda buyers: It’s two hours and 48 minutes long. PG13. Movies 12.

Rush Hour 3: Did I forget this one when I made my list of this summer’s needless sequels? Did I mention I blame director Brett Ratner for the murky mess that was last year’s X-Men 3? Does it matter? Jackie Chan, Chris Tucker, questionable jokes and action humor: you know what you’re getting. PG13. 90 min. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.

Shoot ‘Em Up: Will it be an engrossing action piece, or all flash and no substance? Clive Owen stars in director Michael Davis’ film about a “mysterious loner” who teams up with a stunning woman (Monica Belucci) to protect a baby from an evil Paul Giamatti. R. 87 min. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.

Shrek the Third: When Shrek’s father-in-law kicks the bucket, the ogre finds himself the reluctant king of Far Far Away. His only hope of getting out of the job? His wife’s slacker cousin. PG. 92 min. Movies 12.

Simpsons Movie, The: Well, our Springfield didn’t get the premiere, but in the film maybe we’ll still see some hints that we are the real Simpsons Springfield? Still no idea what it’s about, but does it matter? PG13. 87 min. Cinemark.

Stardust: Matthew Vaughn (Layer Cake) takes a firm and steady hand to the many plot threads of this adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s novel. The result is wicked and charming, sweet and sly, with a stellar cast (Claire Danes, Michelle Pfeiffer, Robert De Niro) and a superb sense of humor. Oh, the story? A young man promises a young lady he’ll fetch her a falling star — but he’s not the only one searching out the young woman who fell from the sky. PG13. 128 min. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15. (8/9)

Superbad: Judd Apatow and Seth Rogen both have fingers in this pie, as co-producer and co-writer, respectively. It’s the story of two high school friends, Evan (Michael Cera, Arrested Development) and Seth (Jonah Hill), who are trying — well, in classic teen movie fashion, they’re trying really hard to get laid. They’re about to go off to college; what do you expect? VRC Stadium 15. (8/23)

Surf’s Up: The young, talented, possibly misguided Shia LaBeouf voices Cody Maverick, a teenage penguin surfer entering his first pro competition. A documentary crew’s filming his every move, which might — sort of — explain that “based on a true story” joke in the preview. PG. 85 min. Movies 12.

3:10 to Yuma: Russell Crowe and Christian Bale costar in this Western from director James Mangold (Walk the Line). Based on a short story by Elmore Leonard that was made into a film in 1957, the film follows a vicious outlaw (Crowe) and the Civil War vet (Bale) who’s volunteered to get the thief to the train that’ll take him to trial. R. 117 min. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15. See review this issue.

Transformers: It wouldn’t be summer without a Michael Bay film, right? Hot on the heels of those other ’80s toys the Ninja Turtles, the Transformers arrive, bigger and flashier than ever. Earth, it seems, will be the battleground for the war between the Autobots and the Decepticons. With Shia LaBeouf (Holes) and Megan Fox. PG13. 144 min. Cinemark.

Waitress: Keri Russell (Felicity) is a wonderful surprise in writer-director Adrienne Shelly’s bittersweet small-town story about love, hope, pies — and finding strength where you least expect it. Shelly’s perfectly cast last film is a beautiful balancing act of emotions. PG13. 107 min. Movies 12. (5/24)


Use the links provided below for specific show times.

Bijou Art Cinemas
Bijou Theater 686-2458 | 492 E. 13th

Regal Cinemas
VRC Stadium 15 342-6536 | Valley River Center

Cinemark Theaters
Movies 12 741-1231 | Gateway Mall
Cinemark 17 741-1231 | Gateway Mall